Yesterday’s email set out a hypothetical timeline for growing a content website to a $1 million valuation.
The numbers don’t lie… it’s a lot of work.
The scenario I set out yesterday suggested 2,600 articles.
I’m a grizzled content publisher neck deep in content daily so when I wrote “2,600 articles” it didn’t seem so daunting.
After a bunch of replies the scope of that number hit me. It’s huge.
Assume an average of 1,500 words per article and you have 3,900,000 words.
Maybe an average of 1,000 words would do it. That’s still 2,600,000 words.
2,600,000 words is many novels. 3 worn out keyboards. Surely one worn out computer.
2,600 articles is huge.
But keep this in mind – if you reinvest your revenue back into content, you can exponentially grow how much you publish each year.
The first year is tough.
Lots of work.
Very little revenue ($.05 per hour if you’re lucky).
Is there any possible way to speed this up?
The only way I can answer this is to put myself in the position if I were starting from scratch right now.
That’s what I did and this is what I would do. It’s a bit different than what I did the first time around. In other words, if I were starting over, I’d take the path of least resistance. I’m no stoic.
My mistake along the way was choosing article topics that were difficult to produce.
I published on topics I thought needed to be on the site.
I didn’t do much keyword research during the early years.
They were the same topics many other sites covered.
Big, big mistake.
Not only were the topics competitive but it was time-consuming to produce that content.
If I were starting over, I’d focus on topics/keywords that have the following attributes:
Low competition: I’d focus on long tail topics with not much competition or competition that’s not so authoritative. I’d want to get traffic flowing ASAP.
Easy to write/produce: This is huge. I’ve written every conceivable type of article over the years. Some are extremely tough and take days. Some are challenging and take a full day. Some are easy. I’d focus the first two years on easy articles. I’d bang out one per day (if doing this part time). If full time, I’d bang out 2 to 6 per day.
What are easy articles to write?
We all have our strengths and weaknesses. The following are articles that are easy for me to write.
Answers to questions. It doesn’t get easier than this and often you don’t have to write 3,000 words. In fact, it would be a rare question that would require more than 1,500 words. I’d do the Q & A method.
How-tos that play to my abilities: If I had a skill or ability that I could complete, photograph and write up fairly quickly, I’d do tons of them. While these types of articles take longer than answering questions, How-tos often have more search volume and get more traffic. They attract links too.
For example, if I sewed and my site had anything to do with sewing, apparel, crafting, etc. I’d bang out dozens (probably hundreds) of simple sewing tutorials. I’d photograph it and then write them up with how-to schema.
Reviews: I wouldn’t focus on reviews, but I’d include them because while boring to write, they’re easy if you have/use the product (and you should IMO). I’d buy a bunch of low cost stuff relevant to the niche that nobody else reviews and punch out reviews.
What’s easy for me may not be easy for you and vice versa.
Are there articles you’ve written that you find easy and fast to produce?
The name of the game is easy-to-rank AND easy-to-produce.
That way you can crank out a lot of content that can get some traffic fast.
Another perk is, at least for me, I’m more inclined to do something if it isn’t so hard.
Once your site is earning and you have a content budget, hire writers for the complex stuff.